26. July 2015 · Comments Off on Squaw Creek – TR 131 · Categories: Around The Campfire, Horse Camping

IMG_0190July 25, 2015 Rob Adams

Eight members of the Squaw Butte Chapter signed up for a trail project on TR-131 North (West Mountain Trail, or Squaw Creek as it is also known). New members Madison Seamans and his wife Annette had not been to West Mountain yet, and were a bit unsure of the driving directions. I needed to make this a day ride with other commitments on Sunday, so we planned to meet at the triangle at 08:00. Janine and Lou Ann also planned to go up Saturday morning, planned to meet up and go together. By 08:30 three trailers were cruising up the newly chip sealed Sweet Ola highway. All went well until we got to the hwy 618 turn off. Another truck and trailer had gotten between me and the group and was heading to Sage Hen. Janine and Lou Ann were talking and not navigating and followed him through the intersection. IMG_0183Janine quickly figured out they were on the wrong road, so they got their and Madison’s rigs turned around and we were off again. By 10:15 we were pulling up to the turn off to the trail head and Jon Seel flagged us down. He said the parking lot was pretty full up there. Janine and Lou Ann planned to camp so turned off into the camp ground and hooked up the Linda and Devon. Jon got his stock together and rode to the trail head, while Madison and I drove to the trail head and found a spot for our trailers. IMG_0181By 11:00 we were saddled and Jon had joined us, but no sign of the others. I expected quite a bit of work to do, so the four of us with the equipment started down the trail. It was not long before we hit the first of eighteen logs we removed from the trail. They ranged in size from six inches in diameter to one that was over twenty-eight inches. We were working on our sixth set of down fall when we heard Janine and Lou Ann talking as the rode up the trail. Devon said they could hear the saw running so knew we were not far ahead, and just took their time catching up. They caught up just in time as that is where we starting running into the bigger stuff. For the next three hours we kept three saws working steadily as the nipper crew cleared brush. The huckleberries are starting to ripen and there were a good number along the trail. Linda picked some so I expect they made it into Sunday breakfast.IMG_0184At 13:00 we stopped for lunch at one of the big granite out cropping and give the stock and ourselves a bit of a rest. We than continued up the trail until 15:30. We were where the trail crosses the creek from north to south where we give the stock a much deserved drink. We also stopped at Lou Ann’s waterfall, for a group picture, which has become a tradition when riding this trail. The trip back to the trail head was quicker than the ride up had been. The lead horse changed a number of times on the way down, often precipitated by a wrong turn, or a horse unsure about the section of trail to be crossed. By 18:00 the group was back at the camp ground, horses feed or in trailers for the trip back. Most of the group stayed for the night and planned to ride Poison Creek on Sunday. It was a successful project, that was enjoyed by all!

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